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Barilla® Collezione Bucatini alla Siciliana

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Elevate your weeknight dinner from an ordinary supper to an heavenly gourmet experience with Barilla® Collezione pasta and this easy to make Italian vegetarian sauce
An amazing combination of truly Mediterranean flavors 
Buon appetito!

Happy Monday everyone! 

I’m so excited today to be working with Barilla® pasta to present you one of my favorite, go-to dinner recipes. A pasta dish that’s perfect for any week-night dinner for family or friends, but also fancy enough for your next dinner party. No matter what’s the occasion, these bucatini alla siciliana will make your meal special and memorable. 



Every mouthwatering forkful of this pasta has it all: the thick bucatini pasta perfectly coated in a garlicky and lightly spicy tomato sauce, mingled with scrumptious eggplant pieces, a touch of pecorino and mozzarella cheese, and a sprinkle of oregano and fresh basil. 
Are your tastebuds as excited as mine now?!? If not, open wide and imagine the flavor of this :)

For this recipe I’m using the Barilla® Collezione bucatini pasta. Have you ever tried it?! One of my favorite. It’s like a thick spaghetti (but even thicker) with a hole in the center. That’s where the name bucatini comes from. Hole in Italian is “buco”. 
This long pasta perfectly pairs with a lot of different sauces, from a mouthwatering tomato sauce (like bucatini all’amatriciana) to not-red sauce (like the typical venetian “bigoi in salsa” made with sauteed onions and salty anchovies), and why not?!? Green sauce too! (bucatini and pesto sauce go so well together).


Today I’m serving my bucatini with this flavorful tomato based sauce, mixed with fried eggplants, a sprinkle of pecorino cheese and some pieces of fresh mozzarella, tossed with the pasta at the really end so that the mozzarella will starts to melt just when you get ready to devour it. 

The Barilla® Collezione (all made with non-GMO ingredients) comes in six different artisanal shapes, from bucatini to casarecce and tortellini. And more.  Each shape is meant to be matched with the perfect sauce. Not all shapes taste the same, have you ever noticed?! Even if the ingredients in the pasta are similar, different shapes have different textures, and each texture holds the sauce in different ways, to make every pasta experience unique and special. 
You can find it in the same pasta isle as other Barilla® pasta, it is clearly marked with the golden “collezione” name. Here it is at my local Vons store. 

Make sure to check out Barilla® for more exciting recipes. Also now you can receive a $5 reward when you spend $15 on any Collezione products between 09/06/18 and 11/26/18. Click here for more information: http://cbi.as/a2cdq

INGREDIENTS:

YIELD: 2 servings
    • 6 oz (170 gr) of Barilla® Collezione Bucatini pasta 
    • 1 medium eggplant 
    • 1 can (14.5 oz, 400 gr) of cubed tomatoes  
    • 2 tablespoons of olive oil
    • 1 garlic clove, crushed
    • 1 peperoncino (Italian hot pepper)
    • 1/4 teaspoon of oregano leaves
    • salt and pepper to taste
    • few basil leaves
    • 2 tablespoons of grated pecorino cheese
    • 1 small fresh mozzarella ball
    • oil to fry

PREPARATION:

TIME: 30 minutes

    Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil.

    Heat two tablespoons of olive oil in a large skillet, add the crushed garlic clove and the peperoncino broken in half (to release the spiciness). Saute’ for 1 to 2 minutes over medium heat.

    Add the tomatoes.

    Season with salt, pepper and dried oregano if you like.

    Cook the sauce for 15-20 minutes, or until you prepare the rest of the ingredients.
    Crush the pieces of tomatoes with a fork.

    Wash the eggplant and cut in in cubes about 1/2 inch in side (1.2 cm).

    Heat the oil to fry in a pan until it’s hot enough for frying. The temperature should be about 370 degrees F. If you don’t have a thermometer, you can do just like I always do. Place a wooden spoon in the oil. When you see little bubbles form around a spoon the oil is ready.

    Fry the eggplant cubes, some at a time. Don’t overcrowd the pan.

    Remove from the hot oil and drain on a paper towel.

    Cook the bucatini in the salted water for 7 minutes (al dente!), stirring occasionally. 

    Remove the garlic and peperoncino from the tomato sauce.
    Drain well the bucatini and add to the skillet.

    Add the fried eggplants, a couple of tablespoons of grated pecorino cheese and the basil leaves broken into pieces. Toss.

    Lastly, add the mozzarella cut in small cubes. Quickly mix and let the pasta sit only for one extra minute in the pan so that the mozzarella will slightly melt. 

    Serve immediately and enjoy!

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